Minutes from Dec. 1 Open Forum

The following is a summary sent by a community member in attendance to folks living in her neighborhood – we could not have said it better our selves:

We wanted to give you a brief update on the Dec. 1 W&L Campus Community Coalition meeting, which was well-attended by both residents and students. The Coalition is now an official student organization; has a student leadership team, including a transition team of juniors who will take over when the seniors graduate; and appears to be making real progress in getting more students involved. Information and updates on Coalition activities and leaders can be found at the Coalition’s website — see point (2) below.

(1) Trash: Neighbors expressed their appreciation for the fact that the university, landlords, and students are working together to ensure that party trash is cleaned up promptly. New initiatives include a recycling program and a focus on cleaning up non-party litter, such as indoor furniture that ends up on lawns, etc. Road clean-ups will continue on a monthly basis, led by students (with neighbors encouraged to join in).

(2) Noise: Neighbors noted that the students are doing a much better job of controlling party noise, although there’s still work to be done in this area. The students asked that neighbors please contact them first, before calling the police, if neighbors are having a noise problem. (See attached contact list and map, which are also available on the Coalition’s website at http://www.1.wlu.edu/x51125.xml and click on “campus list and map” on the left side of the page.) Captain Blaylock from the Sheriff’s office noted that most noise complaints are now coming from a small number of residents; student leaders would like to meet with those residents and the students in the offending houses to address the residents’ needs.

(3) Road safety: A task force will be formed, made up of students, landlords, and residents, to work with the Sheriff’s office and VDOT on road safety issues along Furrs Mill and Greenhouse Roads. (Some progress was made in 2009, and we want to improve on that.) We talked about ways to “calm” traffic and enforce speed limits, teach pedestrians and those who park along the roads how to use the roads safely, and ensure that roads are well-paved and have appropriate signage/markings. If you are interested in being part of this task force (and did not express that interest at the meeting last night), please contact Andrew Bonds (bondsa12@wlu.edu) and/or Kate Cole (colek13@wlu.edu).

(4) “Cultural” changes: W&L student leadership pointed out that, to date, more on-campus parties have taken place this year than during the entire last year. This is a result of concerted efforts being made by the University to encourage on-campus, rather than off-campus, parties. In addition, the students are planning such things as midnight “breakfasts” on-campus on big party nights to encourage students to get back to campus early and safely. The goal is to permanently change the party habits of W&L students and discourage excessive off-campus partying.

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